Aurelia and Deutsch Duke meet on the battlefield for a collaboration that sounds like the
slow-mo cinematic soundtrack to a post-apocalyptic Pulp Fiction… In a world seemingly obsessed with building walls, ‘Battleground II’ seeks to break them down. A futuristically nostalgic record filled with visceral emotional grit, a remedial call to unity.
To celebrate the track, we sit down with Deutsch Duke.
Your rap sheet is a long list of a accolades that any one in particular would be a career highlight for most artists… From writing/producing/performing and mixing the ‘Electric Empire’ record in analogue format, to collaborating on production and writing with electronica duo ‘Flight Facilities’, to doing offical remixes for international artists like ‘Mariah Carey’ and ‘Elton John’… Out of all of the different hats you wear, do you have a particular role that you enjoy the most?
It’s hard to say what part of it I enjoy the most… For me music is seasonal. It depends on how I’m feeling at the time. I enjoyed performing and touring with my band Electric Empire , but I can’t work out whether I loved more the writing and production of the album, or touring the world with the band. Right now I enjoy being with my family, so having the studio close by and producing, being on Skype with producer rat friends and sharing ideas and talking sounds is where it’s at right now for me…
In the last few years you’ve had a couple of Gold records, one with Set Mo’s ‘White Dress’ that you also feature on, and one writing and producing Nicole Miller’s ‘Tremble’… Firstly, what’s a Gold Record, and Secondly, how does it feel the moment you found out something you worked on achieved that status?
To me a gold record is something that sits and collects dust because I don’t really like to put them up on my wall… Ruins my Feng Shui.. Haha. And when I first found out, I thought “that will keep my publisher happy”… lol
You’ve had quite a few different incarnations as a creator and toured the world with all of them, playing stages like Glastonbury and Royal Albert Hall, and supporting a long list a international artists… What has been one of the biggest touring highlights to date?
Definitely playing Glastonbury Festival, then going to London and playing the Jazz cafe. The show was a blast, and we didn’t know at the time but some of the guys from Jamiroquai were there and we ended up hanging out with them afterwards… It was a wild night…
You’re currently doing some artist development, writing and producing with a few artists that a starting to gain a lot of buzz, can you give us a peak behind the curtain of some of the things you’re most excited about at the moment?
At the moment I’m working with another producer friend of mine Dan Duque-Perez on a hip hop artist’s project that goes by the name St Lane. We’ve been working a lot on development and circling in on a great sound and he’s just signed a co-label deal which is pretty exciting.
I’m also working on an album with the wonderful Baker Boy at the moment too, and that has been so great. I can’t wait for all of that stuff to come out, he’s the best.
Lastly, you’ve just put out the stunning collaboration with Aurelia – ‘Battleground II’, 1: How do you find time to release your own music when you’re working on so many other projects? And 2: Can you tell us a bit about the writing and recording process of the track with Aurelia?
1, I think I’ve gotten to the place now where I feel liberated to do whatever I feel like doing, whenever I feel like doing it. It’s creatively such a breath of fresh air to not be subject to all the external pressures a lot of artists are usually subject to. And 2, ‘Battleground II’ is a sort of sequel to the track ‘Battleground’ that I put out a few years back. Aurelia and I talked about doing a reworking of that original song as a type of futuristic duet. She’s an amazing artist and such a talented songwriter and brought a whole other dimension to the song. The recording you hear we recorded as a demo a while back when we wrote the song, and we didn’t wanna mess with the magic so you get to hear it as is.
Battleground II is out now.